Albany Carousel’s first birthday

It’s hard to believe that one year has passed since the Albany Historic Carousel & Museum opened its doors to happy crowds in August 2017. (See the carnival anniversary event information below the blog post.)

Thousands from across the US have walked into the carousel’s impressive building and experienced its unique brand of enchantment. Visitors often find themselves instantly drawn to a particular animal—be it a giraffe or bulldog, horse or frog—each creature is a work of art and love that resonates. Albany’s carousel creatures are hand carved and hand-painted by community volunteers and individually take several years to complete.

Recently, I took out-of-town family to the carousel and we concluded that you are never too old to soak up magic. The “kids” I brought were in their 40s and as we looked around, we noticed that many riders were twice that age. Smiles were universal as the carousel began to move. Given that carousels were introduced to America in the late 1880s, it’s no surprise that many of us remember “merry-go-rounds” as part of our childhood experience. 

The Gustav Dentzel family is credited with bringing European carousel production to the US during the Victorian era, and it is one of their original antique mechanisms that drives the Albany carousel today. The 100-year old fir and cast iron gears were donated by Dentzel descendants. It took local volunteers and laborers over a decade to rebuild and refurbish the antique motor, readying it for the grand opening. Long-range planning and organizing by community member Wendy Kirby is one reason the carousel project succeeded. Her determination and spirit was the primary driver behind spinning dreams into reality.

What you’ll discover when you go

Entering through the Albany Carousel doors is an act steeped in whimsy. The door handles are carved fantasies—animals spiraling around a branch, entwined with leaves. As your fingers curl about the handles, you’re touching the work of local artisans.

The great carousel room is filled with light from enormous windows and gentle breezes from overhead ceiling fans. The domed interior is bathed in a soft glow from amber-hued and arched wood beams. Starry-eyed riders eagerly wait their turn, peering through the wrought iron gate. 

Smiling volunteers accept your $2 ride token and help you clamber aboard. Everyone can ride this carousel, as it is accessible to both wheelchairs or those needing a bit of assistance. A step stool is readily available for anyone who’d appreciate an extra boost for climbing onto a tall animal.

After you take a ride (or two or three!), make sure to visit the carving and painting room. A number of animals are still in production, and repairs to the current roster take place downstairs. Visit the in-house museum that includes 100-year old animals, signs, and other memorabilia—many donated by the Dentzel family. Don’t forget to visit the carousel gift shop where you can purchase souvenirs, toys, postcards and presents to take back home.

Blog post by Maddie MacGregor

Celebrate the Carousel’s One Year Anniversary

On Saturday, August 18th, the Albany Carousel is hosting a family event—an old-fashioned carnival to celebrate the first birthday of its grand opening. The carnival is a fundraiser and will feature game booths, photo booths, a bounce house, face painting, shaved ice and kettle corn, and other activities and snacks. The event runs from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The Albany Carousel & Museum is located at 503 W 1st Ave. For more information, visit www.albanycarousel.com or telephone 541-497-2934. 

10 ways to celebrate August in Linn County

July ends with a bang and August starts with a golden glow as wheat fields are harvested and outdoor fun goes full tilt. The following are 10 ways to celebrate and participate in harvest season with friends and family. We’re pretty sure you’ll find at least one to add to your calendar!

(1) July 28th The Albany Historic Homes Interior Tour  Spend a wonderful day in our city exploring some of our most beautiful historic homes and buildings. The tour is “self-guided,” meaning you have a choice about how to tour the homes—you can ride a horse-drawn wagon or antique trolley and go by location-number, or you can opt to drive your own car and visit homes in any order you like. Hosts will be on hand at each site to show guests around and refreshments will be served. Once you’ve purchased your ticket at our office, you might even want to have lunch at one of our great restaurants, ride the carousel, and join the tour afterwards. Tickets go on sale the day of the tour starting at 10:00 a.m. for $15 each; children under 12 are free. For more information, telephone AVA at 541-928-0911. (You can also purchase tickets on AVA’s secure website at https://albanyvisitors.com/…/2018-albany-historic-interior…/ )

(2) July 29th It’s time for the annual Festival Latino at Monteith River Park in Albany. Spend the afternoon, from Noon to 4:00 p.m., listening to great music, enjoying awesome food, and meeting your neighbors. The festival features a children’s activities area, a health and resources fair, and cultural performances. The festival is free to attend (food is available for purchase).

(3) August 3rd Love Celtic music and local wines? Combine your true loves into a Friday evening out! The Dinna Fash Celtic Trio is performing at Mark’s Ridge Winery on Friday, August 3rd, starting at 7:00 p.m. The winery is located at 29255 Berlin Rd in Sweet Home. Visit the winery website for more info: http://www.marksridge.com

(4) Now Through August 4th Happening now at the Albany Civic Theater: “Bell, Book and Candle.” The classic fairytale about a lovable witch comes to the stage. Tickets are available for upcoming performances on July 27, 28, 29 and August 2, 3, and 4. Visit the ACT website for ticket info: http://www.albanycivic.org

(5) August 3rd through 5th: Sweet Home calls all country music lovers for the Oregon Jamboree. This year’s stars include Clint Black, Brantley Gilbert, and Brett Eldredge. This not-to-be-missed musical event boasts two stages, 25 shows, over three days. The Oregon Jamboree is nestled in the foothills of the scenic Cascade Mountains, on 20-plus acres that includes the historic Weddle Covered Bridge. The Jamboree offers a full festival atmosphere in the main venue and a more intimate concert experience on the second stage in Sankey Park. In addition to featured headline entertainment, this event hosts RV and tent camping, merchandise vendors, food booths, beer and wine gardens, and a variety of other attractions. For ticket and other information, visit: http://oregonjamboree.com

(6) August 4th through 5th Time to mark your calendars and get your tickets: The Mother Earth News Fair is coming up on August 4th and 5th at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center in Albany. Two days of workshops on renewable energy, small-scale farming, homesteading, natural health, organic gardening and more! Come enjoy delicious food, family entertainment and a vast marketplace. Check the fair’s website to purchase tickets in advance, and for more detailed information. https://www.motherearthnews.com/…/mother-ea…/albany-ore-fair

(7) August 8th Do you have ancestors or family that settled in Albany? Would you like some tips on researching your Linn County family tree? Then mark Wednesday, August 8th at noon on your calendar. The Albany Regional Museum will host its monthly “History Bites” series and the Linn Genealogical Society will present. For more info visit https://www.armuseum.com

(8) August 18th Join the Albany Historic Carousel & Museum as they celebrate their one year anniversary with a carousel fundraiser: Carnival at the Carousel. Just as the nostalgia of the carousel lights the faces of those who visit, we hope that the nostalgia of a vintage carnival will do the same. Come see carnival games of the past, old-fashioned carnival characters, a cakewalk, carousel-made photo-boards and kissing booth, Kona Ice, Kettle Korn, and a bounce house. For more information visit www.albanycarousel.com

(9) August 19th The first of Albany’s 2018 Farm to Table Dinners takes place on Saturday, August 19th. Dine al fresco along a shaded historic waterway—the Albany 8th Street Canal. Feast on delectable creations by Chef Matt Bennett of Sybaris Bistro and sip locally-grown and crafted Springhill Cellars Winery selections. The menu is based on Cajun Creole cuisine inspired by Chef Bennett’s recent trip to New Orleans. Seating at the dinner is limited and we encourage you to purchase your tickets early for what will no doubt, be a sold-out event. Dinner proceeds will benefit the Albany Regional Museum (ARM) and enable them to continue to offer free admission to all visitors. Hop on over to ARM’s website and get your tickets now! https://squareup.com/store/albany-regional-museum

(10) Aug 24th through August 26th The NW Art & Air Festival may be the the best little late summer festival around! Watch hot air balloons ascend the night sky during the magical night glow event and early dawn flights. The balloon regatta is a colorful affair and Timber Linn Park will be alive with music, artists, family activities (including Young Eagle Flights) and yummy food from a variety of vendors. Musical artists (featuring this year’s headliner “Goo Goo Dolls”) give evening performances. For the adults, there’s a wine and microbrew garden. The festival is free, but parking is $5. Learn more at: http://nwartandair.org

10 things to do in Mid-July

Looking for some great things to do following the start of mid-summer? We thought you might like this list of some great Albany and Linn County events coming up this July. Don’t hesitate to contact AVA (541-928-0911) if you need more information about any of the following:

1) Crazy Daze in Downtown Albany – July 12th, 13th, 14th Love to dig around for a bargain? Well how about a downtown-wide sale with many of your favorite stores hosting sidewalk sales! Park your car at one end of First Ave and walk towards the Albany Historic Carousel & Museum, which you can ride after shopping. Unique shops will feature awesome merchandise—including the Natty Dresser, Emma’s Downtown, Urban Ag, Spirit Beads, and many many others. Merchandise changes daily over the three day event, plus Albany restaurants and cafes will feature shopper specials. Tidbit: What’s really cool about this sale is that it is part of Albany’s history—the sale started out as Bargain Days in 1898, then was renamed Crazy Daze following WW2.

2) Coffee, coffee, coffee – Grand Opening of Margin Coffee – July 14th The wait may have been long, but the moment has finally arrived. Albany’s newest gourmet-hip coffee brewery is holding its grand opening celebration at their location (206 2nd Ave SW) in a beautifully restored historic building. Come enjoy specialties of the house made with local roaster Caravan’s beans. Saturday hours on the 14th are from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. so you can shop at Crazy Daze and refuel at Margin! Visit their website at www.margincoffee.com

3) Meet me at the Linn County Fair – July 18th – 21st You know it’s high summer when the fair arrives at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center. There will be rides for kids both big and small, fun food, livestock, quilts, community art and craft, and live entertainment including Jefferson Starship. Family fun areas, a classic car show, the zany Redneck Rodeo, and so much more are scheduled over the four day event. Special military, senior, and family day tickets are available. Check the fair website for the full schedule at https://www.linncountyfair.com/home

4) History Through Headstones Tour – July 25th Come learn about the history of Albany through historic headstones at the Waverly Jewish and Houston Cemeteries. The tour is from 7 p.m. to dusk. The AVA trolley will board passengers at the Albany Regional Museum parking lot (check the museum website for times) and museum docent Bill Maddy will talk about the history of east Albany’s Hackleman District as the trolley wends its way through neighborhoods and along Old Salem Road. Learn about the historic Albany families that will be featured on the Albany Regional Museum website at www.armuseum.com/…/…/history-through-headstones-tour

5) Cellar Cat swings at its new location – July 15th At the end of June, wine-centric bistro Cellar Cat moved to its new location at 155 NW Country Club Lane in Albany. They now feature an all-day kitchen menu serving scratch-made goodies to enjoy on the golf course, patio, dining room, by the pool or take-out. Full-service dinner is Wednesday through Sunday starting at 4:30 p.m. And, on Sundays, live music! On July 15th, the Steve Willis Trio will play instrumental jazz starting at 5:30 p.m. Check out CC’s website for the rest of the Sunday line-ups of music and fantastic menu options. www.cellarcat.com

6) Movies at Monteith Park – July 20th (Fridays through August) Looking for a nostalgic evening after dinner? Plan to bring a blanket and the family to free movies shown outdoors on a big screen under the summer stars. The first movie of the summer, Wonder, starts at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, July 20th. On Friday, July 27th, Jurassic Park hits Monteith Park. For the full schedule, check the Albany Downtown Association website at albanydowntown.com/ada-event/movies-at-monteith/

7) Stand By Me Day – July 23rd Speaking of movies, what could be better than visiting the little town where the cult classic, Stand By Me, was filmed? Head on down to historic Brownsville (about 25 minutes south of Albany) and participate in walking tours, free showings of the movie, and other festivities like a blueberry pie and ice cream social, classic car cruise-in, fan forum, memorabilia, and a 50s costume contest. Check out the full schedule at historicbrownsville.com/what-to-do/attractions/stand-by-me/

8) Cocker Spaniel National Specialty Show – July 26th through 30th Have you ever seen the Walt Disney classic movie “Lady and the Tramp?” The 1950s animated film reflected US mid-century popularity of the Cocker Spaniel, a long-eared, silky-coated, and expressive dog. First mentioned in 14th century writings, the Cocker Spaniel perseveres. Come see these beautiful intelligent dogs at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center over three days of trials and judging. Visit the association club website for show schedule details at www.americanspanielclub.org/events/2018-cocker-spaniel-national/

9) Albany Historic Homes Interior Tour – July 28th Spend a wonderful day in our city exploring some of our most beautiful historic homes and buildings. The tour is “self-guided,” meaning you have a choice about how to tour the sites—you can ride a horse-drawn wagon or antique trolley and go by location-number, or you can opt to drive your own car and visit homes in any order you like. Hosts will be on hand at each site to show guests around and refreshments will be served. Once you’ve purchased your ticket at our office, you might even want to have lunch at one of our great restaurants, ride the carousel, and join the tour afterwards. You’ll receive a wrist band with your paid ticket. Tickets go on sale the day of the tour starting at 10:00 a.m. for $15 each; children under 12 are free. For more information, visit albanyvisitors.com or telephone 541-928-0911.

10) Summer Sounds in the Park – Mondays in July Imagine relaxing outdoors on your own quilt or comfy folding chair and listening to great live music. Sip your own wine or beer, grab soft drinks and food from the vendor court, and take a stroll along the river-front with your sweetheart. The lineup this July runs the gamut from electric string pop to funk, swing, and an Eagles tribute band. The free concerts start at 7:00 pm. on Monday nights. For the full schedule, visit the City of Albany website at www.cityofalbany.net

Bonus) The 2018 -2019 “See Albany” Visitors Guides are here! In addition to a feature article by local journalist Jennifer Moody (about the Albany Historic Carousel’s Neal the Greyhound), you’ll also find information about great restaurants, comfy hotels, outdoor recreation, shopping venues, and Albany’s four National Historic Districts. Stop by the AVA office at 110 3rd St SE in downtown Albany to pick up your free copy or telephone 541-928-0911 and we’ll pop one in the mail for you.

Our top 10 for the Fourth of July and beyond

Photo by Alondra Olivas on Unsplash

Although Albany may not have a fireworks display on Independence Day, we certainly can toast to a variety of Linn County and Albany events that take place in and around the 2018 holiday. We thought you might enjoy the following:

Albany Visitors association Fourth of July, July 4, Independence Day, Tandem bikes. NW Tandem Rally1)  June 29th – July 4th Welcome to the participants of the 2018 NW Tandem Bike Rally! You may notice hundreds of cool looking tandem bicycles along Albany and Linn County roads from June 29th through the Fourth. This is a family-oriented event and cyclists of all ages will be camped out at Timber Ridge School and local hotels. Rally participants will be visiting Albany businesses and restaurants, holiday events in Brownsville, Harrisburg, and Independence, as well as Linn County historic covered bridges and other attractions. Make sure to say “Hi!” and strike up a conversation with these friendly fun-loving folks. For more info on how you can participate in the next rally, visit https://nwtr.org

Albany Visitors Association, 2018 Blacksheep Gathering2)  June 29th – July 1st This is the first year that the immensely popular fiber festival, the Black Sheep Gathering takes place in Albany. For the last 40 years the festival was held in Eugene. However, the venue has been relocated to the Linn County Fair & Expo Center in Albany. Come see the unique breeds of goats and sheep, peruse the fiber arts and yarn show, watch the fleece judging, and participate in workshops. Visit www.blacksheepgathering.org for more information on the festival schedule.

3)  June 22nd and June 29th Celebrate the season by visiting MoonShadow Lavender Farm on the last two Fridays in June. The farm will open to the public on the 22nd and 29th, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. MoonShadow is located at 34556 Mountain View Pl NE. Contact Gale (541.928.5122) to register for lavender workshops, including wreath, wand, and swag-making classes. Their gift shop will be open for picking up fragrant bouquets, sachets, soaps, essential oils and other items. Visit http://www.moonshadowlavender.com for more information.

Albany Visitors Association, East Albany Lions Lumberjack breakfast4)  June 30th – July 4th You won’t want to miss the annual East Albany Lions Lumberjack Breakfast. Sausage, eggs, pancakes, and all the accompaniments will be served up at Timber Linn Park. The breakfast starts each day at 6:00 a.m. and lasts until the last pancake is flipped at 11:00 a.m. Alongside the big breakfast is a great classic car cruise-in. All proceeds from the five day event go to local charities and the Lion’s sight and hearing program. The breakfast is $8 for adults and $4 for children ages 11 and under. For more information visit http://www.facebook.com/eastalbanylions/

5)  July 4th Tucked into the countryside south of Albany is historic Brownsville. The tiny hamlet will host an old-fashioned Fourth of July Celebration all day, starting with a big pancake breakfast at 7:00 a.m., filling the daylight hours with kiddie activities, live music and food, and ending with a big-bang fireworks display at dusk. The event is held at Pioneer Park in Brownsville. For more information visit http://historicbrownsville.com/event/breakfast-fireworks-in-the-park-3/

6)  July 4th Join in on a big festive Fourth at the Star Spangled Celebration, held in Lebanon, Oregon, at Cheadle Lake Park. The event starts at 6:00 p.m. and ends at 10:30 p.m. following the fireworks display over the lake. There will be lots of musical entertainment, children’s activities, face painting, bounce houses, and food booths. There is a $10 admission by the carload or you can walk in for $3 per person. For more information, visit www.lebanoncommunityfoundation.com

7)  July 5th Although it follows on the heels of the official holiday, Albany’s outdoor River Rhythms at Monteith Park (alongside the Willamette River) will start the season off with a splash and a bang. The venerable band Blood, Sweat, and Tears will fill the park with their trademark sounds at 7:00 p.m. and a fireworks display will follow the concert. Bring your blankets, folding chairs and picnic food, but please leave Fido or Fluffy at home. The Red Robin Children’s Art Area opens at 5:30 p.m. For the full summer schedule visit https://www.cityofalbany.net/departments/parks-and-recreation/events/river-rhythms

Albany Visitors Association Gallery Calpooia, artist Rob R. Robinson collage8)  July 6th Albany’s Gallery Calapooia will be celebrating First Friday at the gallery from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Featured artists in July are Cheryl French and Rob R. Robinson, who will show prints, collage, and paintings. Meet the artists, sip Oregon wine, and peruse the pottery, fiber arts, jewelry, and other hand-crafted art at the gallery during reception hours. It’s a great way to spend a Friday night while enjoying the arts and celebrating with your neighbors. For more information visit https://www.gallerycalapooia.com

Albany Visitors Association blog post about Willamette National Forest 2018 US Capitol Christmas Tree9)  June through October 2nd Christmas arrives in July at the Willamette National Forest in the Sweet Home Ranger District! Not only is there a special contest to find the US Capitol Christmas Tree, but the Willamette Valley Visitors Association has hidden 200 glass ornaments along the forest hiking trails for you to find. If you discover one of the special keepsake ornaments, you can register to win one of over 120 prizes. All entrants who submit their ornament tag ID will also be entered into a sweepstakes with a spectacular grand prize: A round trip for two to Washington DC to attend the US Capitol Christmas Tree lighting and festivities. Visit https://albanyvisitors.com/2018/06/11/unearthing-christmas-in-summer/ for more information.

10)  June through October 31st It’s time for the OSU Master Gardener Demonstration Garden located at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center. Visit the garden for innovative ideas to try at home. Volunteers at the garden grow herbs veggies, flowers, fruit trees, berries and grapes, and sun and shade gardens. They show you how to make compost and share many other home gardening tips. Visit https://www.linnmastergardeners.com/demonstration-garden.html for information on spring and summer hours, and upcoming seasonal events and workshops.

11)  Bonus! Don’t forget to download the free Albany Explorer app, now available on Google Play for Android and Apple for iPhone or iPad. It’s an exciting on-the-go interactive app that features historic covered bridges tours, Albany Historic District architectural tours, top selfie spots, and much much more. It’s a fast and easy way to access event information and to find the perfect place to eat, sleep, and shop. Find out more at https://albanyvisitors.com/2018/05/30/new-albany-mobile-app-launches/

Ride the 2018 NW Tandem Rally

Get your gears spinning for the 2018 Northwest Tandem Rally (NWTR) coming up June 29th through July 4th. Hosted by the Mid Valley Bicycle Club (MVBC), the NWTR has been an annual event since 1986. The MVBC was founded in 1974 and has hosted this family friendly event four times previously.

If you’ve biked the Mid-Willamette Valley before, you’re most likely familiar with our abundance of quiet country roads through farmland and forests and up into the foothills of both the Cascades and Coast Range.

If this will be your first time in the Albany area, you’re in for a real treat. As all of the NWTR routes start in the Valley, there are lots of options for mostly flat rides, as well as hilly rides, and even a short climb or two into the mountains if your legs are up for it!

Albany, Oregon – 2018 rally’s home away from home

The 2018 Northwest Tandem Rally will be centered in the historic town of Albany, the “Gem of the Willamette Valley.” Albany is the eleventh largest city in Oregon and is located at the confluence of the Calapooia and Willamette Rivers. Founded in approximately 1848 the town has the most varied collection of historic buildings in Oregon.

While you are in town, make sure to visit the pioneer-era Monteith House  and regional museums. Take the family to the Historic Albany Carousel & Museum or attend a River Rhythms outdoor concert on a Thursday summer evening.

Surrounding Albany is one of the most diversified agricultural areas of the state, featuring miles of quiet country roads, historic covered bridges, and a burgeoning wine, hops, and spirits industry. Schedule a visit to one of Albany’s incredible restaurants and vibrant coffee houses during your stay.

Stop by the Albany Visitors Association for maps, a visitors guide, and recommendations for family-friendly places to visit while you’re in town for the rally. AVA is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Mondays through Fridays, and on Saturdays (9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.) in the summer, and is located at 110 3rd Ave SE. Telephone 541-928-0911 for more information.

Accommodations and registration

Since the Fourth of July falls in the middle of the week this year, an extended rally is possible. You can stay an additional two days beyond the regular four-day schedule, and enjoy six days of riding through the scenic Willamette Valley. There’s even a bonus three or four day tour following the rally if you just can’t stop peddling.

For a full list of the NWTR accommodations, including the campgrounds at South Albany High School and rally hoteliers, and registration information, visit the 2018 NWTR website.

See you in Albany!

Albany wins travel destination award

Congratulations are in order to our fair city! Albany was included in Northwest Travel & Life magazine’s “52 Getaways” issue in January 2018, and has been named one of the publication’s 2018 Top Travel Picks.

Albany Visitors Association contributed to content developed for the feature article, and Albany businesses are highlighted, including The Pix Theater, Sybaris Bistro, and the Albany Historic Carousel & Museum.

Read the article “Dreamers and Doers” in NW Travel & Life’s ’52 Getaways for 2018.’

 

 

The 2017 Night Time Magic Holiday Light Winners

The Albany Visitors Association is proud to announce the winners of  The 2017 Night Time Magic Holiday Light & Decorating Contest

And the winners are …

 

  • Piedmont Christmas Cul-de-sac, 6127 Piedmont Pl SW, Albany, OR 97321

 

 

 

 

  • It’s the Most Magical Time of the Year, 3849 Oakmont Loop NE, Albany, OR 97322

 

 

 

 

  • Let there be light, 797 Fairmont Drive NE, Albany, OR 97322

 

 

 

 

  • Candy Cane Colored Cape Cod Colonial, 1122 11th Ave SW Albany, Oregon 97321

 

 

 

 

  • Holiday Greetings in Downtown Albany, No Dinx Inc., 139 SE 1st Ave, Albany, OR 97321

 

 

 

Winners will receive a Winner Award Certificate and a $50 gift card to Albany’s downtown first-run movie house: The Pix Theatre. Photos of the winning homes will be on display at the Pix Theatre and on the Albany Visitors Association website along with a list of locations to see. Winners will also be entitled to bragging rights for the entire year! Thank you to all the homeowners who participate in this program. Without your efforts, this wonderful community tradition would not be possible.

Get your map

Want to take a drive with the family and see the lights in person? Download the PDF of the winners’ map, or pick one up from our office at Third and Lyon.

Around Albany for the Holidays – Part Two

If you caught Part One of our 2017 Holiday Blog, we hope that you’re ready for Santa! Albany is a wonderful place to be this time of year and there are many ways to celebrate the joys of the season. We’ve included the second half of our featured December ideas and events below. Happy Holidays from all of us at Albany Visitors Association!

Travel to a Tropical Island

Take a Virtual Vacation Next Tuesday, December 19th, visit the warm Galapagos Islands! At 7:00 p.m., Don Lyons will present a presentation of travel photographs from his trip, at the Albany Public Library. Telephone 541 654 2052 for more information.

Family Entertainment

Kids Club with the Grinch and Cindy Lou Who On Saturday, December 16th, at 11:30 a.m. head on over to Heritage Mall for some great family fun.

YMCA Brunch with Santa Come have brunch and take a photo with Santa! Brunch menu: pancakes or biscuits and gravy, sides, and beverages. Register at the Y’s Welcome Center located inside the YMCA. Space is limited. Proceeds benefit the YMCA After School Program Scholarship Program. Cost is $10 per adult $8 per child. The brunch is held at the Eastside Christian Church, on December 16th, with seatings at 9:30, 10:30, 11:30. The church is at 3201 Pacific Blvd SW in Albany.

Pet Photos with Santa Woof Woof! Albany’s Heritage Mall is hosting a family pet adventure with Santa on Sunday, December 17th from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. So pack up Fido and Fluffy and head on over.

Visit from Santa at the Albany American Legion Santa is visiting the American Legion, located at 1215 Pacific Blvd, on December 23rd at noon. There will be food and drinks for all the good girls and boys, plus presents from Santa and his favorite elf Justin Sloan. In addition, Santa flew in a Christmas band, a story teller from Hawaii, and tons of fun. If you know a child who may not have a merry Christmas, send them to our party so we have an opportunity to brighten their day. Children of Veterans, and all children are invited. Santa will be down from the North Pole.

Christmas Play “It’s in the Eyes” is a family oriented performance and is free. The play starts at 5:00 p.m on Sunday, December 17th. The Whitespires is a historic church located at 510 SW 5th, in Albany. For more information, telephone 541-928-0911.

Christmas Music at Heritage Mall The Mountain View Elementary Honor Choir will sing classic holiday favorites at Albany’s Heritage Mall. Make sure you don’t miss out! The performance takes place on Thursday, December 21st, at 6:30 p.m.

Christmas Eve Sing-a-Long Come celebrate Christmas Eve and participate in singing Christmas carols and other favorites at historic Whitespires Church. The event starts at 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, December 24th. For more information, telephone 541-928-2469.

 

Historic Holidays in the Making

History Bites at the Museum Join the Albany Regional Museum and learn about holiday traditions in three different communities found in Albany. On Wednesday, December 13th at noon, Clara Frost, Terrance Harris, and Father Stephen Soot will discuss the Jewish celebration of Hanukkah, West African diaspora’s Kwanzaa, and Christian Orthodox traditions. Bring a brown-bag lunch or enjoy light refreshments. History Bites is free, however donations are happily accepted and help sustain the museum for all to enjoy. Join in on the discussion, located at ARM, 136 Lyon St S.

What to do in Albany for the holidays – Part 1

Have you been naughty or nice? Why nice is the best of course, so make plans to participate in all of Albany’s Christmas and Holiday magic! We think the following events will get you in the holly-jolly spirit.

Horses, Horses, Carriages, Wagons and Rides

Albany’s Heritage Mall is hosting holiday horse-drawn carriage rides with Chafin Farms’ gorgeous draft horses. The rides run though December 22nd, so come get in the spirit! Use the link below to connect with the mall on their Facebook page, and learn more about how your entire family can ride the carriage and visit Santa. https://www.facebook.com/heritagemall/

Albany Christmas Parlour Tour On Sunday, December 10th, from 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., enjoy the sights and sounds of an old fashioned holiday celebration in Historic Albany, Oregon. This year the tour will feature six historic homes decorated for the holidays. Ride in Chafin Farms’ beautiful horse drawn carriage through downtown Albany. Special shopping events, light refreshments, and entertainment await. Get your online tickets ahead and avoid the lines! Tickets: https://albanyvisitors.com/2017/10/09/tickets-for-2017-christmas-parlour-tour/

Christmas Caroling by Horse-Drawn Wagon The Monteith Historical Society and Chafin Farms are offering Christmas caroling by horse-drawn wagon through the Monteith Historic District. The tours take place on Saturday and Sunday December 16th and 17th, beginning at 5:00 p.m. and leaving every 45 minutes. Song leaders, books and bells will be provided. Proceeds are dedicated to the Monteith House Museum. Telephone the Albany Visitors Association at 541-928-0911 for more information. Or, stop by our office, M-F, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. and pay for your tickets ahead of time with check or cash.

Song and Dance

Singing Christmas Tree Love traditional Christmas carols? Then don’t miss the 36th Annual Sweet Home Singing Christmas Tree performances. The show runs from Friday, December 1st through Sunday, December 3rd at the Sweet Home High School auditorium. Friday and Saturday, the show starts at 7:30 p.m., and on Sunday,the performance begins at 3:00 p.m. For more info, use the link: https://www.facebook.com/Sweet-Home-Singing-Christmas-Tree-189693289088/

Nutcracker Ballet tickets make a wonderful holiday gift! Get yours today before they sell out. Legacy Ballet returns to the Russell Tripp Performance Center for “The Nutcracker” ballet, Dec. 7, 8, 9 at 7pm, Dec. 9 at 2pm. Tickets available anytime online with the more info link: http://linnbenton.edu/current-students/involvement/performing-arts/buy-tickets

Families and Children

The Downtown Twice Around Christmas Parade rolls through Downtown Albany on Sunday, Dec. 3rd, 2017. The parade starts promptly at 5 p.m. The parade route starts at the corner of Broadalbin Street and First Avenue, heads west down First to Calapooia Street, heads south on Calapooia to Second Avenue, heads east on Second to Broadalbin, heads north on Broadalbin to First, and then around again, ending at the Two Rivers Market parking lot at the corner of Second and Ferry. Immediately following the parade is the Community Tree Lighting Ceremony. If you have any questions please call the Downtown Albany office at 541-928-2469 or visit the Albany Downtown Association: http://www.albanydowntown.com/ada-event/twice-around-parade-and-community-tree-lighting/

Children’s Pioneer Christmas Party Celebrate the Christmas season the way the pioneers would have done in the 1800s by joining the festivities at the Monteith House. Children ages 5-16 are invited to join the Monteith Historical Society for a Christmas party on Sunday, December 3rd at 3:00 p.m. Children will make pioneer Christmas crafts to decorate the House tree, sing carols, eat Christmas cookies, and have the option to ride on the horse drawn wagon in the Twice Around Downtown Christmas Parade at 5:00 p.m. The cost is $15 per child, and $10 per additional sibling. Reserve your child’s spot today by calling the Albany Visitors Association at 541-928-0911. Space is limited and fills up fast!

Free Holiday Movie On Saturday, December 9th,  Downtown Albany and the Pix Theatre partner to show a classic Christmas movie for the whole family. This year we’re showing “White Christmas.” Doors open at 9:30 a.m. and the movie starts at 10:00 a.m.  Come early, especially if you are a large group as the theater fills up quickly. This is a free event, so first come-first seated.  Please bring a non-perishable food item if you can for our local food pantry. Call the ADA, 541-928-2469, if you have any questions.

Christmas Storybook Land welcomes families to enjoy its free 41st year presentation. See an enormous indoor Christmas forest wonderland with over 100 scenes of characters from Mother Goose rhymes, children’s fairy tales and family movies, two elaborate model train displays, a Victorian Village and the North Pole with Santa & Mrs. Claus. Canned food donation is gladly accepted for local food bank. Learn more at: http://christmasstorybookland.org

Shop Small ’til You Drop

YMCA Holiday Market On Saturday, December 2nd from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. enjoy our one stop shop. Find holiday gifts, enjoy great company, and support small business. Admission: $1 per adult or 2 cans of food. A portion of the proceeds from sales will benefit the Y’s scholarship fund. For more information, contact Kim at resourcedirector@ymcaalbany.org

Morning Star Grange Holiday Crafts Bazaar On December 8th through the 9th, head to Millersburg for home baked goodies, seasonal and hand-crafted products and gifts. The sale begins at 10:00 a.m and runs util 4:00 p.m. Lunch is available both days. 38794 Morningstar Rd NE, Millersburg. For more information, contact Sandy at dshdeck@aol.com

Santa’s Bag Located at Roddy Ranch, this holiday sale on December 8th and 9th features unique hand-made gifts and decorations, homemade breads and candies, antiques and fun finds! Hours are 10:00 a.m to 5:00 p.m. both days. For more information, contact Mary Beth at roddyranch@gmail.com The ranch is located at 33281 Dever-Conner Dr NE, Albany.

Putting the “howl” in Halloween

Looking for some absolutely “killer” local fun for Halloween? Want to entertain the “monsters” in the family? Well here’s list of featured events that are gonna blow your striped witch socks right off!

Listen to the audio file and get in the mood!


 

Albany’s Monteith House Museum and the Albany Visitors Association are planning a devilish good time for all ages. Their first event is one that kids and grandkids will enjoy: the “Trolley of Terror!” Our bright red vintage trolley will be decked out in spooky halloween decorations and will run hourly local tours throughout downtown. It’s going to be nothing but onboard fun, plus a candle-lit tour of historic Monteith House.

The Trolley of Terror starts on Friday, October 20th, with hourly tours at 6:00, 7:00, 8:00, and 9:00 p.m. The trolley fun continues on Saturday Oct 21st, then again on October 27th and 28th. Seating is limited, so reservations and pre-payment are highly advised. Telephone AVA at 541-928-0911 for your tickets or stop by our office on Third Ave SE and Lyon. Tickets are $5 for children under 12, and $10 for adults. Special group rates are available.

The VIP Ghost Hunt Tour is strictly for adults. Spend the evening at the Monteith House Museum with a small group of dedicated ghost-hunters. Learn how to use paranormal activity equipment and participate in an investigative tour of the house. Each tour runs from 10:30 p.m. until 1:00 a.m., and is limited to 10 people. The VIP tour will run on Saturday, October 14th, Saturday, October 21st, and Friday, October 27th. This is a “not to be missed” tour, requiring reservations. Tickets are $50.

Both events’ ticket sales will help maintain the non-profit Monteith House Museum.

What to do around the town and nearby

Runaway Pumpkin Half Marathon and 8K Feeling a bit pumpkin-shaped from summer goodies? Well this event should help keep you ship-shape for Halloween treats. The marathon takes place on Saturday, October 21st at Cheadle Lake in Lebanon. Get all the info you need about registration on the marathon website: www.runawaypumpkinhalf.org or telephone 541-848-3978.

Boo Boogie Bash Rough Stock Rodeo How about getting your cowgirl or cowboy boots on and heading out to the Linn County Fair & Expo Center? On Saturday, October 21st from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. you can boogie with the best of the rough riders. Pre-admission tickets are $13 buckaroos or $15 at the door. Small ghouls and boys under 5 are free with accompanying adult. Check the event website at www.wildwesteventsinc.com or telephone 541-895-5335 for more information.

Albany Downtown Trick or Treat and Costume Contest On Saturday, October 28th, from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. you can bring the entire family down for a safe and fun way to celebrate. Downtown stores will open for trolls, witches, ghosts, goblins (and Captain America too!) or any child ready for a treat. Sponsored by the Albany Downtown Association, check www.albanydowntown.com for more information or telephone 541-928-2469.

Zombie Zoup Run On Saturday, October 28th, Sweet Home is getting their sweet treat on with an exciting run for everyone. The event starts at 10:00 a.m at the Jim Riggs Community Center. For more information and registration, visit the event website at www.zombiezouprun.weebly.com or telephone 541-367-5128.

Heritage Mall Trick or Treat at the Mall If the zombies in the family haven’t found a party yet, Heritage Mall is hosting a Halloween Day/Night trick or treat event from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, October 31st. Check out their website at www.heritagemall.com or telephone 541-967-8238 for more information.

 

From all of us at AVA, have a safe and Happy Halloween!